|Morsi claims victory as junta makes 11th-hour power grab||
Muslim Brotherhood candidate Mohammed Morsi claimed victory on Monday in Egypt's divisive race for the top job, as a military power grab overshadowed the country's first post-Mubarak presidential election.
Two generals from the Supreme Council of Armed Forces (SCAF), however, reiterated that the ruling body will transfer power to the new president by June 30 and insisted that he will enjoy full presidential powers, AFP reported.
A confirmed win by Morsi would mark the first time an Islamic party has taken the presidency of the Arab World's most populous nation, but military moves that appeared to render the post toothless were slammed by activists as a coup.
Morsi's rival Ahmed Shafiq, a former air force chief and ex-prime minister to ousted president Hosni Mubarak, disputed the The Muslim Brotherhood's victory announcement.
State media also reported that initial counts showed Morsi ahead, however.
"After the counting was finished in all of Egypt's 27 provinces, indications show that Mohammed Morsi has won 51 percent and Ahmed Shafiq won 49 percent," the state-owned Al-Ahram said on its website.
There were scenes of jubilation at Morsi's Cairo headquarters, where the candidate thanked Egyptians for their votes in brief remarks after the Brotherhood said he had secured 52 percent of the ballots cast.
Morsi pledged to work "hand-in-hand with all Egyptians for a better future, freedom, democracy, development and peace."
"We are not seeking vengeance or to settle accounts," he said, adding that he would build a "modern, democratic state" for all Egyptians, Muslims and Christians alike.
A Shafiq campaign official disputed the Brotherhood victory claim, saying their figures showed its man was ahead.
"We reject it completely," Mahmud Baraka said of the Brotherhood claim. "We are astonished by this bizarre behavior which amounts to a hijacking of the election results."
Morsi supporters, many tearful, screamed with excitement as several hundred people staged a victory rally in Cairo's iconic Tahrir Square, the hub of protests that led to Mubarak's departure in February 2011.
But their jubilation was overshadowed by the prospect of a looming showdown between the Brotherhood and the ruling military, which granted itself sweeping powers.
The SCAF has introduced de facto martial law, given itself control of the legislature and state budget and also granted itself veto power on a new constitution to be written by a panel that it will pick.
"The military hands power to the military," read the headline of the independent daily Al-Masry al-Youm.
"A president with no powers," said another independent, Al-Shorouk.
Revolutionary youth movements, which had been split over whether to boycott the election or to vote Shafiq out, denounced the declaration as a "coup," while the Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party said it rejected any military bid to retake legislative power.
"The military council, with its unconstitutional coup, gave itself (unprecedented) powers. The military council has never and will never recognize popular legitimacy that contradicts it," the Coalition of Revolution Youth said in a statement.
"The next phase is a very difficult phase," senior Morsi campaign official Khaled al-Qazaz told AFP.
"It already started with the military trying to take all power, which requires all Egyptians to continue the momentum of the revolution to make sure the transition is complete."
The Brotherhood now finds itself increasingly marginalized, and even faces a lawsuit challenging its legitimacy and legal status.
But the military insists it will transfer power to the new president.
The election victor will swear his oath before the constitutional court by "June 30, this month," Mahmduh Shahin, one of the ruling generals, told a news conference.
Another SCAF general, Mohammed al-Assar, said the vote winner will enjoy full presidential powers.
"The president of the republic will be vested with all the powers of the president of the republic," Assar told reporters.
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